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Re: Weapons of mass destruction

Posted by Lewis on March 14, 2003

In Reply to: Weapons of mass destruction posted by Michael Chamberlain on March 14, 2003

: Hello friends,

: I read with interest your discussion about the origin of the phrase "weapons of mass destruction". I am quite interested in this topic - but from a particular angle. Chemical and biological weapons have been around since the first world war and before. However, I suspect that only nuclear weapons have been referred to as weapons of mass destruction until fairly recently. I suspect that applying this lable to chemical and biological as well as nuclear weapons is politically motivated and was initiated to justify our present war against Iraq. Can anyone confirm or refute this theory?

I think that you will find that other bombs that can cause immense loss of life were also called WMD - even before the present political crisis. I agree that WMD did not have any prominence as an expression and did not usually figure in the same breath - it used to be CBN chemical-biological-nuclear that got referred to in those kinds of contexts.
Almost takes you back to MAD.